Today I’m following on from yesterday’s post about my holiday in Tenerife. I already talked about the local area, the beach and the fiesta, so today I want to tell you about some of Tenerife’s main attractions: Jungle Park, horse riding, boat rides, Playa de las Américas, Mount Teide and Siam Park.
Jungle Park is one of two large animal parks in Tenerife. I have mixed feelings about it overall. On one hand it was a fun day out-the scenery is beautiful, they have a lot of unusual animals (over 300 in total) and the bird shows were amazing. They had parrots that could perform tricks, we saw eagles and huge African vultures flying and saw a Stork up close as it fed. They also have a big obstacle course through the park and a bob sleigh, which are fun for kids.
The main thing that disappointed me was the lack of space that the wild cats had for their enclosures. The poor white tiger was pacing up and down, obviously bored out of his mind. This seems to be the same for all animal parks/zoos-you never see animals with a habitat close to what they would have in the wild. I suppose you can argue that in the wild some of these animals may be hunted and have shrinking habitats anyway, and that zoos help with conservation and educating guests about wildlife and sustainability. The ethics are definitely debatable.
On the plus side, most of the other animals that we saw had decent sized enclosures, and the park seemed to provide varied habitats for each of them. The birds of prey were free to fly off during the shows but returned to their trainers when they called, probably because they know where they’re bread is buttered.
So, overall this is a good family day out that most will enjoy. The tickets are reasonably priced but the food is very expensive so I advise you to bring your own snacks!
We visited Horse Riding Adventures in Tenerife for a one hour hack up in the hills. This was a fantastic experience! I hadn’t been on a horse since I was about 11, so it really brought back a lot of memories and felt really natural once I was back in the saddle. The horse I rode was called Seargant and he had two speeds: a very slow walk and a very fast gallop! While the other horses went into a trot he just tried to gallop straight away, so it was fun trying to reign him in and stay in the saddle! But he was a good horse and listened to me, so it was fine. The views were brilliant when we got up the hill and sadly the hack seemed to be over very quickly. I’ll definitely go again next time!
In Puerto Colon we went on a boat ride about five miles out to see to go whale watching! Our trip on a catamaran was organised by a company called Kosamui. It was good value as you got a 3 hour trip with food and drink included and an opportunity to scuba dive. Unfortunately for me, the water was very choppy and I was very badly sea sick. But it was worth it as the views were amazing and we got to see some pilot whales and a sea turtle!
Playa de las Américas is the main tourist area of Tenerife-filled with restaurants, clubs and designer shops. We spent an evening looking around there and enjoying the sights. It reminded me of a mini Vegas with all the themed hotels and monuments. It was a busy area, so we were glad we weren’t staying there but it was nice to look around.
Mount Teide is the big volcano in the centre of the island. One day we took a trip up it and the views were breathtaking. We saw lots of interesting rock formations caused by the molten lava cooling and it was amazing to be above the clouds and see them floating around us like a fluffy white sea.
This was probably my favourite part of the holiday. Siam Park is the most spectacular water park in Europe. It boasts 13 water rides and pool areas including a lazy river that leads to a tube through a shark tank, a huge wave pool, kid’s play areas, river rapids and some huge water slides. I really enjoyed the wave pool, although I did swallow rather a lot of water! My favourite dingy ride was the Volcano. It involved zooming through twisting tubes in the dark before swirling around a large round dome area with jets of steam and falling into a hole in the middle. The Jungle Snakes were also great as there was no queue for them. There were four different slides and you could go down in a 1 or 2 person doughnut.
The park was also set in lovely scenery and there were plenty of places you could rest under sun-loungers and get a bite to eat. The restaurants served nice food at reasonable prices and there were lots of souvenir shops and interesting things to look at like statues and koi ponds-it was all Asian themed.
We were there from 10am-6pm and the day flew by as there was so much to do. I really loved Siam Park and would definitely go again!
All in all, Tenerife is a fantastic holiday destination. There’s so much to do. We didn’t even cover the East and North of the island in our two weeks. Hopefully one day we’ll go back again and do some more exploring.
Have you ever been to Tenerife? What’s the best holiday you’ve been on?